Media live by legends; or rather by labels, and a label is a sort of legend. The great mass of people, which is US, cannot do with an excess of complexity or subtlety. We have to be given a frame, or structure, of simplicity if we are to have any kind of context for what we read. A famous incident labels a figure. It may be quite untypical of that figure. Ever afterwards it is a placard hanging round his or her neck -- 'This is Bishop John Robinson: he gave evidence for the defence in the Lady Chatterley case.' We, the public, need reminding who people are. This reminds us. The label helps. Yet the label creates a legend. We read all else we know of a character in the light of a label, which may record some moment or happening entirely untypical of the person round whose neck we see the label hanging.
Owen Chadwick, The Spirit of the Oxford Movement, Cambridge University Press (Cambridge: 1990), p. 157.